Nyack, May 1 (REVISED 1:18p) — Beginning May 15, people who park in the village need to remember just two numbers: 11 and 6. Feed the meters between those hours and you are good to go…shop, dine or walk around downtown. The new twist is that the 11 and 6 plan is 24/7: 11a-6p and 11p-6a.
The new parking hours, championed by Nyack Mayor Jen White, hopes to combine two existing problems into one tidy solution. The plan boosts the evening restaurant business by giving three fee-free hours to diners who now have to pay to park between six and nine. The additional revenue earned from overnight parking fees will be used to address a nagging problem: paying for staff to sweep up trash on Main Street sidewalks left by late-night crowds.
“By shifting parking hours slightly, we are offering restaurant patrons the opportunity to dine without feeding the meters and to shift the financial burden of the cost of cleaning up after late night visitors from residents and restaurant diners to visitors who come to the village late in the evening,” says White.
The new hours will only be in effect on Broadway and Main Street from First Avenue to Cedar Hill Avenue and from Mill Street to Broadway. Until June 1, only warnings will be issued when violations occur. The new plan is being tested for three months after which officials will re-evaluate and renew, tweak or discard the new 11-6 rules.
Here’s a Q&A about the parking plan published on the Village of Nyack website:
Why are you shifting the parking hours?
We are shifting parking hours slightly to:
- Provide daytime businesses that stay open until eight a few extra hours of free parking for local residents to run their errands
- Offer restaurant patrons the opportunity to dine without feeding the meters
- Shift the financial burden of cleaning up after late night activities from residents and restaurant diners to visitors who come to the Village late in the evening but also providing those patrons a way to pay in bulk for their whole evening eliminating the need to feed meters.
The new hours will only be in effect on Broadway and on Main Street from First Avenue to Cedar Hill Avenue and from Mill Street to Broadway.
How will 11 ‘€“ 6 work?
The idea behind the 11-6 time frame is that they are easy numbers to remember. Signage will give visitors fair warning of the new policy. The program will officially begin on June 1. From May 15 through June 1, cars will not be ticketed but will be posted with flyers reminding bar patrons of the imminent change. Most communities that are the size of Nyack eliminate meter parking at 6:00. The 11-6 time frame gives a consistent set of numbers that patrons can remember.
Meters will be in effect from 11:00 am, as they already are, until 6:00 pm. They will go back into effect at 11:00 pm until 6:00 am. Evening meters will allow for pre-purchase of up to eight hours of parking in advance.
The fee for seven evening hours (11:00 pm ‘€“ 6:00 am) will be $5.30 and can be paid in full in advance. Those attending performances or the theater can put in a quarter (or more) at any time between 6PM and 11 PM and receive a meter ticket that begins at eleven and is good for the amount of time purchased. Should you wish to spend the whole night in the Village, you can prepay the $5.30.
People have worried that they will have to leave a musical performance, a theatrical performance or a bar to feed meters. As stated earlier, the meters can be pre-fed earlier in the evening and will go into effect at eleven, eliminating that concern.
Will our parking enforcement officers be safe?
Our parking enforcement officers are currently on the street starting at 3 am. The new plan would have them begin work several hours earlier which is a less volatile time according to court and police records. That said, every method for protecting them is being put in place. Orangetown Police supports this plan and will provide aid to enforcement officers, as they have always done should it be necessary. Late night parking enforcement officers will work in pairs. They will also have the ability to perform some building code enforcement.
How and when will this plan be implemented?
The plan will begin on May 15. The goal is to try the program for ninety days. We will not begin until temporary signage is fully in place, stores, bars and restaurants have flyers explaining the change in the program and we will not do any enforcement for the first two weeks of the plan but will instead flyer cars with necessary information in lieu of tickets.
We will encourage nighttime businesses to purchase parking permits for resident lots to avoid on street parking by their employees.
What are the costs associated with this new plan?
The additional expenses related to the program include; additional hours for parking authority workers, reinstating a DPW cleaning crew to clean the streets and sidewalks of Nyack after busy bar nights and any costs incurred in changing the meters and adding new signs.
What are the benefits to Nyack Residents?
The additional hours to meter operation has the potential to add $175,000 in revenue to the village after expenses. This is revenue generated only from people paying at the parking meters and does not include any additional ticket revenue. The reinstatement of the DPW evening crew is made possible by new revenue from this plan.
This revenue will allow the village to clean the streets following busy nights so that merchants, store owners and residents do not have to utilize filthy streets after the late night visitors leave. This will also allow for cleanup, by our public works employees and any court ordered community service worker, of buildings, doorways, flower beds and any other areas that become repositories for trash following busy nights in Nyack.
How was this plan developed?
This plan reflects concerns and comments from residents and businesses and was developed in consultation with three parking experts who believe it is a worthwhile venture because it addresses a Nyack specific problem. Many discussions have been held with all of those involved, the parking authority, Orangetown Police, Department of Public Works, Village Board members, the Village Attorney and the trial program reflects those discussions. There is some concern that rolling back the meters to 6 pm will negatively impact dinner hour parking turn over. Nyack has, however, never enforced turnover. We do not chalk tires, we do not ticket for overstaying the meter limits and, as it is, people do feed meters to stay longer. This may indicate a naturally occurring turnover. The restaurant owners have been warned of this possible unintended consequence and the trial period will be important in testing this.
See also: Proposed Parking Plan Will Pay For Street Cleanup, Mayor Says, 1/26/2012